9 February 2019 FT — Articles to Read

9 February 2019


Question: According to MSN: Money, what are nine (9) awful things that could happen if you do not pay your taxes?


Australia cuts growth forecast and warns on trade tensions – Pg. 3

–        The Reserve Bank of Australia has slashed its forecast for growth amid weak consumption, global trade tension and a worsening outlook for the Chinese economy

–        …lowered its forecast for GDP growth for the year to the end of June from 3.25% to 2.50%

–        The RBA warned that a correction in the property market, which has seen national house prices fall 8% from their 2017 peak, was “a significant area of uncertainty”

–        It revised its consumption growth forecast down from 3% to 2.75% over the coming year

–        House prices surged by 50% in the five years to 2017 but tighter credit conditions and concerns over debt are causing a correction that economists warn is denting consumption growth


Global economy – Pg. 7

–        ….central bankers in Australia, India and the UK were preparing to join a broader retreat from plans to tighten monetary policy

–        An update from the IMF last month bemoaned the “backdrop of weakening financial market sentiment, trade policy uncertainty, and concerns about China’s outlook”.  Growth in advanced economies will slow from an estimated 2.3% in 2018 to 2% in 2019 and 1.7% in 2020

–        The Fed, in particular, over-reached by signaling four increases in interest rates for 2018 when the global economy was still fragile

–        The key turning point came in the fourth quarter, when markets suddenly began to wake up to a host of political hazards, including the danger of a further worsening in trade relations between the US and China

–        …corporate giants in the S&P500 index, which generate a third of their earnings overseas, are sounding the alarm about faltering overseas demand in markets including China, where the government has been battling against a slowdown

–        The addition of a 25% tariff on US boat exports to Europe has been punishing

–        The Fed, which led the world’s major central banks in beginning to tighten in 2015, has been at the centre of the recent outbreak of dovishness

–        With US inflation as tepid as ever, the Fed has set aside recent worries about economic overheating, focusing instead on what central bankers like to call downside risks.  Rate rises are, for the time being, off the agenda


Opec faces pricing threat from US legislation – Pg. 13

–        Legislation that would make it possible for the US government to prosecute Opec member countries for fixing oil prices is moving forward in Congress, …

–        Like its predecessors, the legislation being considered by Congress would eliminate the sovereign immunity that has protected members of Opec, exposing them to the threat of prosecution for collusion under US antitrust laws

–        The No Oil producing and Exporting Cartels Act 2019, or Nopec, bill was introduced in the House on Monday, passed by the judiciary committee on Thursday, and is on course for a potential vote by the full house

–        The legislation could allow the forfeiture of assets in the US, a major concern for officials in Saudi Arabia, Opec’s de factor leader.


Answer: (1) You could get hit with penalties; (2) You could forfeit your refund; (3) The government could put a tax lien on your property; (4) The government may seize your assets; (5) The government can garnish your income; (6) Anyone can find out about your debt; (7) the IRS will summon you; (8) You might have to file for bankruptcy; (9) You could go to jail